The Sunday News
Dumisani Nsingo, Senior Farming Reporter
THE Government will consider working in liaison with farmers’ unions to identify farmers to benefit under its various programmes aimed at enhancing the country’s agricultural productivity.
Zimbabwe Farmers’ Union president Retired Major Abdul Credit Nyathi said it has been noted that over the years a number of farmers that benefited from Government’s various inputs support programmes had failed to utilise the resources to improve production.
He said the Government has agreed in principle to distribute its support scheme inputs to farmers that exhibit potential to improve production as it moves to boost the country’s food security.
“The arrangement of involving farmers into a productive entity by both the unions and the Government is intended to identify farmers in districts or provinces that are excelling even if resources are scarce. Government is agreeing with unions to have a base where we start by identifying farmers that are already in a mode of production. Once identified the unions will work together with Government to say can we now empower these with resources,” said Rtd Maj Nyathi.
He said channelling resources to farmers with a proven ability to enhance their enterprises would play a huge part in ensuring food sustenance in the country.
“Once we empower these farmers in totality, the production level, whether crops or animals should be upped in such a way that we address the economic needs and above all food sustenance of our country,” Rtd Maj Nyathi said.
He urged livestock farmers to consider introducing their animals to supplementary feeding so as to guard against losses due to the effects of drought.
“It’s now time for people to de-stock in order to buy commercial feed and store it in readiness of July or August. In the southern region part of the country, notably in Matabeleland and Masvingo, the situation will be dire. So people can start from there to supplement towards the next rainy season.
“We are also working with Government, Arda (Agricultural and Rural Development Authority) and also Command Agriculture to say can we come up with a model where we partner our rural farmers with investors so that we can alleviate this drought,” said Rtd Maj Nyathi said.